When the Lord and the divine visitors question Abraham, they asked “Where is Sarah thy wife?” To the cursory reader, while this may seem like a very simple and direct question regarding the whereabouts of Sarah, in-depth scrutiny reveals quiet the contrary.
First note, how the Lord refers to Abraham’s wife as Sarah – the new name she was given by the God (Genesis 17:15) and not Sarai – her birthname given to her by her earthly father – Terah (Genesis 11:27; Genesis 20:12). Second, did you notice, how the Lord is stating the obvious apropos Sarah’s relationship to Abraham as his wife. We do not know of any other Sarai who was renamed Sarah except for Abraham’s wife at that time. Then why would the Lord need to explicitly refer to Sarah as Abraham’s wife?
To answer this, we would need to rely solely on God’s word and other sections in the infallible Scripture can give us some insight. Abram (before he was named Abraham) had told a half-truth i.e., lied to the Pharoah of Egypt about his relationship with Sarai (before she was called Sarah) stating that she was his sister, for the fear of his life (Genesis 12:11-20). Additionally, Abram, at the consent and act of Sarah herself, had taken her Egyptian maid Hagar, to be his wife not concubine (Genesis 16:3). The Lord leaves no question unturned – that it is Sarah, not Hagar who is “Abraham’s” wife through whom his promised Seed (Galatians 3:16) would hail.
Points to ponder:
From these we can learn a few things –
1. God calls us by our new names and not our old. When we belong to Christ (we are Christ ones or Christians) and God sees us as his children and not as the children of the devil (John 8:44) under whose power we live (1 John 5:19) since natural birth (Psalm 51:5) until we are born again spiritually (John 3:3-7; 1 Peter 1:23). What is your new name for those who are in Christ – those who have received him and believed in his name – those who are a new creature (2 Corinthians 5:17); they are the children of God (John 1:12).
2. The Lord reminds us and reestablishes our relationship. Due to our meagre understanding of the power of God, we may choose to establish our own earthly relationships, but only the relationship that God has promised and provided will stand. Just as Sarah was the wife of Abraham, bearing the children of freedom and not of slavery to the law (Galatians 4:21-31), those who are the children of God, born again, by believing in Jesus are children of freedom and are free indeed (John 8:36).
What is your new name?
Is your relationship with God – a Father-Child relationship?
Can God say <put your name here> my child?
Genesis 18:9 (KJV)
9 And they said unto him, Where is Sarah thy wife? And he said, Behold, in the tent.